The Museum School

Governing Board

Regular Meeting - Tuesday October 15th, 2019 @7:00 PM

Meeting Minutes

Attendance Summary

Name Status Arrival Time Departure Time
Clay Jones present chair On Time At Adjournment
Jesse Lincoln present vice-chair On Time At Adjournment
Andy Huff present member On Time At Adjournment
Leah Dobbs present member On Time At Adjournment
Katie Cota present Treasurer On Time At Adjournment
Katherine Kelbaugh present member On Time At Adjournment
Katherine Moore present secretary On Time At Adjournment
Alan Locke not present member
Andrea Jones not present member
Danielle Royden present member On Time At Adjournment
Ingrid Irby present member On Time At Adjournment
Kelly Swinks present member On Time At Adjournment
Frank Furman present member On Time At Adjournment
Tamara Richards present member On Time At Adjournment
Richard Piercy present member On Time At Adjournment
Janaun Ivy present member On Time At Adjournment
Mike Stewart present ex-officio On Time At Adjournment
Christina Cassidy present member On Time At Adjournment

Welcome and Call to Order

The Meeting will be called to order by the Chair.

Mission: The mission of The Museum School of Avondale Estates is to inspire students, teachers and the community to collaborate to develop strong critical thinking, interpersonal and academic skills in our students, which will prepare them for real-world success.


Core Values: Responsibility, Respect, Cooperation, Sustainability, Creativity, Kindness

Public Comment

Our Public Comment period is for members of the public to address the board. Each member of the public may sign up to comment at the meeting, and will be allotted three minutes. The board will listen, but may not directly respond to any comments. Please do not use specific student, teacher or administrator names in your comments as our meetings are open to the public and public record. As such, if your comment is about a private matter, please contact the board via email, or speak to the board chair privately.

Approve the previous meeting minutes

Motion to approve the minutes of the September 17, 2019 board meeting.

By: Richard Piercy Seconded by: Jesse Lincoln

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

Approval of Agenda

So that there is agreement between board members on the agenda, and the amount of time spent on the meeting, the board shall vote to approve an agenda for the meeting. To the best of its ability, it will follow that agenda, and allow for the chair to move the board through the agenda as specified.

Approve the agenda as submitted

By: Richard Piercy Seconded by: Andy Huff

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

Development Committee Update

Update from Development Committee Chair, Leah Dobbs, and Foundation Representative

Auction update from Ingrid Irby--auction night 25 days away. Board members asked to connect event committee with auction items; buy tickets (consider purchasing an Explorer table, invite new parents, encourage ticket purchases by others); generally get the word out about the event ( for more details on tables, tickets and VIP opportunities).

Foundation update from Leah Dobbs--reviewed Grandparents Day logistics and details, including the new morning, condensed format. Over 200 guests have RSVP'd. Donor event for media center was held earlier in October and was successful. New orchestra fundraising event has been rolled into the Foundation (was previously handled solely by orchestra instructor).

Facilities Committee Update

Update from Katherine Moore on behalf of Facilities Chair, Alan Locke

Security Grant progress reviewed. Projects identified from the security master plan, needs of teachers/staff, etc. as reviewed previously are being priced and a final vendor is close to be selected. This is a reimbursement, non-competitive grant of an available $30,000.

Facilities Grant was discussed. This is a reimbursement, non-competitive grant of an available $40,000. Facilities Committee has received 5 quotes for removal, abatement and replacement of the cafetorium windows, all of which are significantly beyond budget. Committee is reviewing options including doing only a portion of the window replacement at this time that would be within budget and/or a combination of replacing lighting in the two classrooms renovated when the media center relocated to its new space and an unidentified project. Katherine Kelbaugh reminded the Board we would need to revisit and amend the budget with DeKalb Schools if we do not replace the cafetorium windows and proceed with less costly projects, as we built the budget contemplating the use of all $40,000 of the Facilities Grant.

Ingrid Irby announced that TMS had been approved for a Georgia Power rebate of slightly over $1,000 related to our past lighting efficiency upgrades. The rebate check is in the mail to the school.

Finance Committee Update

Report from Committee Chair and Board Treasurer, Katie Cota

Profit and Loss worksheet was reviewed. Ms. Cota noted that in the September QBE revenue line item there is a variance. Ms. Cota pointed out that the budget was created with a more conservative assumed figure for QBE, which we've since learned will be higher. A few other variances were also reviewed, all of which will be addressed when the budget is amended.

Balance sheet was then reviewed. Two accounts will be kept to help segregate funds that have been previously used for detailed tracking, such as the media center fundraising and expenses. A minimum balance of $2,500 each will be moved to hold these accounts open without penalty for future similar uses such as holding Fund the Need proceeds.

The draft audit was reviewed by Grant Goodwin, CPA with Aprio LLP. Mr. Goodwin walked through major sections and findings of the report. He noted that our student enrollment figure has increased since last year's school figures, having effects in several aspects of the audit, and that net positions reflect a decrease in cash from last year (used for the media center). He further noted that revenue items were generally consistent year over year, except QBE which increased as student enrollment increased. Expense line items were also generally consistent year over year, with allowances for, again, media center expenses. Capital assets went up, as Mr. Goodwin noted that the media center went into service from its previous construction status. Noted an increase in miscellaneous revenue related to the $30,000 awarded for being named Charter School of the Year (which was then spent on technology for the students). Mr. Goodwin then reviewed the Notes section of the audit. He pointed out that the TMS line of credit was not used and will expire next year. Budget to actual was summarized in the final pages of the audit report. Next steps will be to have a quality control review within his firm and a submittal of the final audit to the Finance Committee.

Ms. Cota reported that the draft audit was received Tuesday (day of the Governing Board meeting), so the Finance Committee has been unable to review and approve of the audit which has been our traditional process before the Governing Board votes to approve.

The Board decided to hold a special called meeting next Tuesday, October 22 at 7:00 PM to discuss and vote on the final audit. Prior to this Governing Board meeting, the Finance Committee will review, meet and likely approve the final audit, then circulate material to the Board for its review.

Personnel Committee Update

Update from the Personnel Committee Chair, Kelly Swinks

No update. The Personnel Committee did not meet this month, pending recommendations from the Governance Committee related to bylaw changes, (dissolution of the Personnel Committee).

Diversity Committee Update

Report from Committee Chair, Christina Cassidy

New parent council on diversity meet for the first time last month. The committee will be working with Katherine Kelbaugh to support this council. Also, the committee will be advancing priorities articulated by the diversity dashboard which was previously presented to the Governing Board.

Christina previewed a GIS analysis of past lottery application origination addresses to understand where our outreach and recruitment efforts could be more strategic. It was noted that some additional work is needed but it is believed this activity will be insightful.

School Leader Report

School Leader, Mike Stewart provided an update on the school.

Exhibit Night continued to be successful as a two night event and will likely be a permanent change.

Mr. Stewart presented and reviewed future training of 19 staff in restorative practices, an approach to addressing harm done that focuses on repairing relationships, not simply consequences to an action.

Forthcoming detailed reporting on Closing the Gap and Progress scores. These scores assist school leadership and teachers in determining instruction strategies.

Annual report to the Department of Education is in progress and due November 1.

Executive Director's Report

Executive Director Katherine Kelbaugh will provide an update

ED Kelbaugh announced some school celebrations TMS and TMS staff have been nominated for a variety of award recognitions. Any final award announcements will be shared with the Board.

A review of TMS recruitment and study body expansion opportunities covered further exploration of future transportation support, mailings/yard signs/other TMS awareness and recruitment tools.

ED Kelbaugh discussed new partnerships for both younger student-focused organizations as well as older student-focused organizations.

Board Chair Update

Remarks and project updates from Chair, Clay Jones

Reminder of special called meeting next Tuesday, October 22 at 7:00 PM to discuss and vote on the audit.

The Meeting was Adjourned

The meeting adjourned at approximately 9:20 pm

Motion to adjourn

By: Kelly Swinks Seconded by: Katie Cota

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

Governance Committee Update

Update from Governance Committee Chair, Jesse Lincoln

Carl Vinson has confirmed our fall retreat for November 17 and an agenda will be shared in the future.